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By Movistar Yamaha MotoGP

Rossi laments "missing out on the probable victory"

Heartbreak on the last lap as the ‘Doctor’ slides out

The French GP rose to an incredible crescendo at Le Mans, with Movistar Yamaha MotoGP teammates Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales locked head-to-head on the final lap and the nine-time World Champion ahead. A mistake from the Italian then let the Spaniard through, but Rossi pushed hard to stay with the rider from Roses as the final corners approached – too hard, as disaster then struck.

Valentino's heartbreaking crash

A crash for the number 46 as he readied himself for a final push saw him sliding out of contention – losing the Championship lead to his teammate but having showed fantastic pace after a more difficult time in Jerez.

Next stop? Mugello, and home turf.

Valentino Rossi, DNF: “It was a great shame, because for my team it was the best weekend of the season, where I was more competitive on the track, also in the wet, but especially in the race. For sure, for me this could have been the best result of the season. It was very difficult because the pace was always very high, but at the end I felt comfortable on the bike, I had a good feeling, so I tried to attack. Unfortunately, on the last lap I made a mistake in turn 6 and I fell back a little, so Maverick could overtake me. I knew I had another chance, because we were very close and I tried to remain there, because in sector 4 I was good. Sincerely, what happened during the crash, we don't understand. Usually you have to pay attention to the front, but I lost the rear when I crashed. Anyway, I made a mistake, and it's like this. It is a great shame to go back home with zero points. First of all, I'm very sorry for missing out on the probable victory and also for losing the lead in the championship, because I lost points. For me, it still has been a good weekend, I was strong. Now we have to start thinking about the next race track, I hope to ride there like I did this weekend. We hope to continue like this."

Rossi: "It's a great shame"